Japanese designer Kenzo Takada has died aged 81 from Covid-19. The founder of fashion house Kenzo died at the American Hospital in Paris, a spokesperson from the company informed French media.
His passing was confirmed by an official statement released on the Kenzo Instagram account.
"It is with immense sadness that Kenzo has learned of the passing of our founder, Kenzo Takada," the statement read. "For half a century, Mr. Takada has been an emblematic personality in the fashion industry - always infusing creativity and colour into the world. Today, his optimism, zest for life and generosity continue to be pillars of our Maison. He will be greatly missed and always remembered."
His death comes just four days after his eponymous label showed its latest spring/summer 2021 collection during Paris Fashion Week.
The designer moved to Paris in the 1960s and launched his own label in 1970, which quickly gained popularity due to his vibrant use of colour and print. He sold his clothing label to luxury conglomerate LVMH in 1993, reports the BBC, and he retired in 1999.
Designer Giambattista Valli took to Instagram to pay tribute to Takada, referring to him as "the king of the unexpected".
"My dearest Kenzo, thank you for teaching me the generosity of sharing happiness, my extra-ordinary guru... the King of the unexpected and surprising extravagance," he wrote. "What a joy sharing with you experience, fun, holidays around the globe and family dinners in your Japanese kitchen... I’m going to miss you deeply and I’m trying not to be sad thinking of you full smile already back again with Loulou, Xavier and Karl. I’m still dancing with you and I will dedicate any joyful moments to you! Bon Voyage precious friend."
Takada was recently seen attending the Paris Fashion Week shows at the beginning of March, shortly before lockdown.
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